Headteacher’s Weekly Bulletin
Friday 17th July 2015
Dear Parents / Carers
Just a quiet week to end the term? Not much going on? Don’t be absurd, this is Wellington and staff and students seem intent on ‘draining every last drop’ out of the school year.
It would be remiss of me not to mention our departing staff in my final bulletin and wish them well in the next chapter of their careers or in Mr Shaw’s case, his retirement. Mr Shaw has assumed ‘legend’ status in the eyes of many staff and students, past and present, at Wellington School after 30 years of selfless and committed service. Beyond the School, in his role with the community and local primaries, he is also well-liked and deeply respected. He will be sadly missed by all of us (although he will still be knocking around) and we are indebted to him for his huge contribution over those three decades.
Other departees that leave with our best wishes; Miss McShane, Miss Hoban, Miss Davison, Mr Armstrong, Mr Baker, Mr Stanley, Mrs Naughton, Mr Pilgrim, Mrs Vickers, Mr Collins, Mr Ruaux and Mr Woodward.
So how have we been ‘winding down’ this week?
Heyes Lane Sports Day
Miss Richards was asked to help out at one of partner primaries this week and as always the students jumped at the chance; “What a way to end the year … a chance to be sports leaders at a local Primary School. So off went 32 Year 10 GCSE PE students to help with the Years 3 and 4 and also the reception classes from Heyes Lane. The roles were to give out stickers, ensure the students were competing correctly, provide demonstrations, retrieve and organise equipment and show off the skills that make Wellington PE students fab! All 32 students thoroughly enjoyed helping the younger students and were a credit to the school.”
Hopefully they’ve also inspired the next generation of Wellington athletes.
Mr Poole informs me that successful entrants from Year 7 in the UK Mathematics Trust Junior Mathematics Challenge received their certificates this week. “Taking centre stage was Reece Glassbrook, who is seen with his Gold Certificate, his Best in School Certificate and his Certificate of Qualification for the Junior Kangaroo Challenge. We still don’t know why it is called a Kangaroo Challenge, but Reece did fantastically well to get as far as he did and here is his invitation to try it*. Other recipients of certificates were Emily Peers, Paige Cross, Jack Deighton-Brown, Thomas Addison, Daniel Roberts, Nicolas Contos, Conor Erskine, Caitlin Maguire, Isabelle Leslie, Lillie Harris and Mia Claude-Williams.”
*Fancy one of Reece’s questions? OK then, here goes…
I have two types of square tile. One tile has a side length of 1cm and the other has a side length of 2cm. What is the smallest square that can be made with equal numbers of each type of tile?
Emily Holt in Year 10 has provided this report of last week’s French trip;
“On Thursday 9th July to Monday 13th July, Miss Weeks, Miss McShane, Mrs Roe-Bennett, Mr Manifould and Miss Mille took 45 of us to Normandy, France to experience the French culture, practise our French speaking and gain more of an understanding of key historical events. Once we arrived in France, after the long coach and ferry ride across the channel, we visited a hypermarket called Auchan in Boulogne which was enormous! After that, we drove to a pretty town named Honfleur which had lovely shop fronts and a picturesque harbour. Then we arrived at our stunning accommodation – Château Du Baffy. After settling into our rooms we all came down for dinner (a three course meal!) and then had some free time to explore the grounds of the château. Later we all went to bed after the long day travelling, preparing ourselves for the early start the following day.
The next day started with a visit to the charming little town of Bayeux. We were given free time to wander the cobbled streets, visiting quaint shops and doing some souvenir shopping. Just before lunch we all looked inside the Bayeux cathedral which was breath-taking, the attention to detail was amazing and the stained glass windows were remarkable. Soon after lunch we went to Chocolaterie du Drakkar which provided us with an insight into how their chocolate was made and we even got given some free samples to enjoy! When we arrived back at the château, we had some more free time to enjoy the grounds and relax in the sun. If the day hadn’t been good enough already, we ended it with a BBQ which included burgers, hot dogs and a tasty salad which was presented beautifully. After dinner the château staff provided evening entertainment and games and we then had some more free time before bed.
Our final day commenced with a visit to Arromanches to watch a film in the 360? cinema, followed by a visit to the Arromanches landing museum, both of which gave us an in depth understanding of the Battle of Normandy. The teachers then bought us all a delicious ice cream (which we all ordered individually in French) before heading to the American cemetery at Colleville. Once we arrived at the cemetery, I was astounded by the vast amount of lives that were lost, not forgetting that this was only one of the many cemeteries in the area. As far as the eye could see it was a sea of white crosses which was quite emotional and poignant to witness in reality. After the cemetery, we went to Omaha beach and enjoyed watching a brass band play to commemorate those that had fallen in battle. We then all played a huge game of rounders (which the staff may have enjoyed more than the pupils!). In the late afternoon, we returned to the château for ‘dégustation’ – a tasting of frogs legs and snails! The majority of us tried some which was an unforgettable experience! To conclude, the whole trip we had a fancy dress party and everyone looked amazing however I am sure that everyone would agree that Miss Weeks and Miss McShane’s minion costumes were the most incredible! After lots of dancing, a conga and the limbo, the party had to end despite ours and the staff’s disappointment! The next day we travelled home, back over the channel to Dover before driving back to school to meet our parents.
Overall, the French Trip 2015 was not only beneficial to our French skills, it was undeniably one of the best trips I have been on due to the immense amount of activities that we did; there wasn’t a moment to spare! The company of friends and staff was brilliant and made the trip much more enjoyable. I would recommend this trip to everyone without a doubt! Thank you to Miss Weeks and all the staff for taking us on the trip.”
I’m so jealous; it sounds like a marvellous experience and what a brilliant piece of writing from Emily. She could write for a travel mag!
Mr Morgan & Mr Stanley report on the A’ level mountain bike assessment to Glentress, Scotland;
“The trip to the Scottish Borders was a physically demanding four days, mountain biking on some of the best single track routes that the UK has to offer. The nine students involved were looking to gain evidence for research projects and practical marks for their A Level studies. The group stayed in a bunkhouse on the banks of the River Tweed, each day began with a long ride to the top of the Glentress Mountain Bike trails, and then a choice of blue and red graded trails through some extremely challenging and technical routes. Both members of staff were pleased with the resilience, determination and enthusiasm shown by all students, we had some epic falls (a necessary part of downhill mountain biking) and definitely left some skin on the trails, Sam Warren, Rob Gill, Joe Cronshaw, and James Moore were all worthy winners in the best crash category, but I am pleased to say no one suffered any lasting injury. In my 17 years of running trips, this one provides many memories, but one that I have shared with staff, is that the sixth formers were all asleep by 9.00 each evening and needed to be woken by staff the next morning at 9.00, a clear sign of the effort levels that were required each day. The trip has given many students a real passion for a new sport and some excellent evidence and video footage to be used for their A level studies”
From Miss Macglinchey;
"This Thursday, our very first 'Day of Sport' reward day was a roaring success. The most committed 150 sports people from Years 7 - 10 took part in a carousel of activities including dodgeball, football and rounders. However, the activities that were the biggest hit were the obstacle course, capture the flag, tug of war and the Irish version of the egg and spoon race - potato and spoon race!! The pupils were absolutely superb and replenished their energy with a Domino's pizza lunch. A big thanks to the PE staff, Mr Baker and Miss English for making the day really enjoyable and hopefully it will encourage even more commitment to school sport next year!"
Miss Macglinchey further reports that she has applied for the 'Sainsbury's School Games' Silver Award on behalf of our school and can confirm we've been awarded with the Silver mark for this academic year. The initiative recognises schools for their commitment to getting more pupils involved in sport; developing pupils leadership, refereeing and organisational skills; developing pupils engagement in competitive activities both at intra and inter-school competition levels.
This is a great achievement as the list of criteria for the Silver award is pretty extensive. In September we will be looking at possibly going for Gold and what we need to do as a school in order to achieve that. All the info is on 'www.yourschoolgames.com' just in case you want to have a look. Thanks Miss MacGlinchey, something to look forward to already for next year.
6th Form News
Mr Cropper and his 6th Form team decided to really stretch the applicants for Head Boy and Head Girl this year; on Day 1 they had to deliver a presentation to a large, not-easily-pleased group of around 20 staff in the Octagon followed by a group planning task. On Day 2 they were grilled in an interview by Mr Cropper and myself. All 10 candidates performed incredibly and were far more accomplished than I ever recall being at the age of 17 and so it was a tough call. Ultimately, with input from a number of colleagues, we elected Jessica Ronan and Nathan Dean as Head Boy and Head Girl, and Ellie Leahy and Daniel McLaughlin as Deputies. Robert Gill, Jordan Lee, Jason Stack, Millie Broad, Jess Clarkson and Kayleigh Rogers complete the Sixth Form Leadership Team.
The aforementioned Kayleigh Rogers along with friends Emily Clough, Megan Baker, Hannah Dolan and Amber Grundy have received plaudits from Dr Carole Mindham, Chair of the Altrincham & Hale Marie Curie Fundraising Group. At the Altrincham French festival recently the girls helped out selling raffle tickets, running a tombola and a ‘name the bear’ competition and organising a stall selling water. Apparently around £2000 was raised during the day and Barclays bank have agreed to ‘price match’ this sum. Well done, ladies!
It’s been a very different week for Year 10 students this week in the main but one which they appear to have enjoyed immensely and benefited hugely from. Thanks must go to Mrs Mackay and Mrs Taylor-Crooke who planned and co-ordinated the activities this week – faultless as always.
It began on Monday with the Enterprise Challenge and Mrs Macaky provides this report;
“All Year 10 students at Wellington School were involved in an ‘Enterprise Challenge ‘, which took place in school on the morning of 13th July 2015.
This activity is a practical introduction to the concept of enterprise, where Year 10 students were given the opportunity to work as a team in a ‘blue chip company’. During the morning they were able to experience some of the issues that companies face such as production, marketing, sales and finance.
Prior to the event the students completed a ‘Personal Profile Form’, which gave an indication of their strengths, working styles and skills. Students were then allocated specific job roles suited to their individual skills and attributes as a member of a particular company. The Challenge is intended to provide an opportunity for students to use their practical, problem-solving, decision making and presentation skills.
They were also encouraged to use their own initiative and individual talents, whilst working as a team, as they were in competition to make the most profit. In order to do this the students negotiated contracts, produced promotional materials, as well as products, that they presented to the panel of customers in a simulation of an industry supply chain. The students also had to manage their time carefully so as to meet the deadlines agreed in each financial quarter.
The Year 10 students rose to the challenge with enthusiasm, tenacity and maturity and all thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Many sincere thanks go to ‘Our futures’ and all the employers involved.
Winning team: Managing Director Jennifer Phillips; Sales Manager Matthew Lloyd; Marketing Manager Kara Crees; Production Manager Thomas Baxter; Engineer Chloe Hadfield; Engineer Harry Sutcliffe; Engineer Charley Elise Guy
Next, on Tuesday 14th July, it was the Year 10 ‘Being Healthy’ event. This summary from Mrs Taylor-Crooke followed by comments from tutor groups;
“Wellington welcomed many external organisations ranging from charities such as ‘Coppafeel’ and ‘Genesis’ to a reformed criminal Shaun Attwood.
The day involved Year 10 Students working around a number of activities on a carousel with their tutors and fellow tutees. The activities included: n STI/contraception workshop; a teenage parent forum Q&Q; a mental health workshop; check yourself clinics (Breast, cervical and testicular cancer); a talk from Alcoholic Anonymous volunteers; A talk from a reformed criminal who was involved with drugs; an alcohol/drugs workshop; a body combat session and finally a yoga session.
All of the sessions were crucial to enrich healthy lifestyles in our students and enhance what is already covered in our PSHE curriculum programme. Here is a selection from what the students had to say about the event;
Today’s Healthy Living Day was informative, educational and most of all enlightening! We were privileged to listen to some inspirational speakers who were open and honest about their experiences and what challenges we could face as individuals. The most interesting issues were those relating to drugs and alcohol and removing the myths about sexual health and contraception. Shaun Attwood’s talk was a real ‘eye-opener’ and we all really loved his open and frank presentation of his horrendous experience. We all enjoyed active participation in the yoga and the boxercise/combat lessons. Overall we can take the skills and knowledge learnt today through the rest of our lives!
The practical things were really fun. The real life stories were interesting. Body combat was the best and we want weekly yoga and body combat to help with the stress of Year 11. T-bone says take care out there.
Boxercise was fun and energetic; we’d love to do it again! The drug talk was shocking and hard-hitting: the graphic images of prison life in Arizona were horrifying. In the drugs clinic we found out lots of interesting information to warn us about the disorientating effects of drug use. In the teenage mother talk we experienced what life can be like as a teenage mother after comparing our days and seeing how fast we can dress a baby! Even with one hand. ‘Check Yourself’ was really eye-opening and it showed us how easy it is to actually detect cancer before it reaches its more dangerous stages. We found the Alcoholics Anonymous talk really interesting as it was fascinating to meet and listen to the story of someone who has been a victim of alcoholism. As well as this, we had a Mental Health talk in which we discussed local services available to help young people like us. Yoga was very relaxing and an enjoyable experience, especially the breathing exercises. Finally, the STI station was great because we were able to learn helpful and useful facts about STIs and contraception and win prizes!
Today’s talks have been both informative and interesting. They have informed us about real life topics that can affect our futures. The most interesting fact in our opinion is that all the issues we discussed can happen to anyone. Our favourite station was Shaun Atwood’s story about drugs and his experiences within one of America’s toughest prisons. Overall we fully enjoyed today and we are extremely grateful to all staff and visitors.
We heard people speak about their own experiences, and these were very enjoyable. It was good because we have never done anything like this before; it has given us a new insight into all aspects of later life. It was about issues that affect us now or will do soon – they were relevant to our age group and there was a good variety of activities and people.
All in all a fabulous day was had by all. I feel privileged to be part of the year 10 tutor team. Additional thanks go to the tutors, Mr Williams and Mrs Clarke who all helped to assist the smooth running of the event on the day!!!”
And finally on Wednesday it was the Year 10 Armed Forces day, now in its third year.
Here’s Mrs Mackay again, “Wednesday 15th July saw the invasion of the Armed forces upon Wellington. Year 10 were put through their paces working through an array of activities designed to develop teamwork, interpersonal skills and overall physical fitness. The students were also fortunate enough to receive careers input from the forces giving fantastic advice about the various opportunities for all levels of entry whether that be post GCSE’s, A Levels or later. The Students had a fantastic day, here is what some of them had to say …
Educational and exhausting, today gave us a real insight into the varied jobs within the Army, Navy and RAF. Through the many practical activities we took part in we were able to build the morale of the tutor by working as a team. We learnt valuable life skills and how to ‘think outside the box’ to solve problems as part of a tutor team. We had a great time, thank you to all the armed forces!
At today’s Armed forces events we completed a variety of tasks that enabled us to develop team work, thinking skills, resilience and reasoning. One of the best parts of today was the RAF physical activity tasks of damsels, knights and chariots and the team skipping exercise in the Sports Hall. We also learnt about the life of a serving member of the armed forces in Afghanistan. These events were a real ‘eye-opener’ and gave us an insight into the types of roles we undertaken within the armed forces.
The Army day was a very good experience for all pupils as we learned a lot about actually being a soldier and how it’s not all about fighting. It is also about the experience and qualifications you gain and the skills which you can use in later life. We now really appreciate the value of teamwork. The practical activities were good fun. We hope that every Year 10 at Wellington gets to experience this informative day.
Thanks from 10NWN
Today was truly a great insight into the amazing work men and women in our military do to keep us safe. We respect them for that. We enjoyed the tactical activities that pushed our teams to the max! Overall the Armed Forces Day was a thrilling and accelerating day that allowed us to come together as a tutor and really value the importance of team work throughout the day. We enjoyed challenging and fun thrilled activities and understood the importance of all roles within the armed forces. Definitely a day to remember!
Today we have participated in various activities which have mentally and physically challenged us. In our opinion, we thought that the RAF energisers was the most engaging task because everyone was involved, it was competitive and different to the other tasks. We were lucky enough to be joined by the RAF, Navy and Army who encouraged us to work together as a team.
All of the Armed forces were extremely complimentary about the students from Wellington. Mrs Mackay and Mrs Taylor-Crooke would like to congratulate Year 10 on such fantastic behaviour and attitude - a year group to be reckoned with!!!”
Mr Tomlinson’s final words about his beloved Year 11s;
“Last Friday was our annual prom which saw us visit a new venue,"The Point" at Lancashire County Cricket Club. Mrs. Thomson had been working hard behind the scenes to ensure the décor, DJ, photobooth, photography, balloons, wristbands, props and sweetie cart were all ready for the evening. I had the easy task of getting there early to set up and simply do a speech, so thank you to Mrs. Thomson for her efforts with the prom it was fantastic (you would have thought it was a wedding – it’s been that well planned). The students looked exceptional in there evening attire - it was a very colourful evening!!! They were excellently behaved and received many comments in this regard from the staff at Old Trafford. Angelphotography commented, ‘The students were well-mannered and behaved very well in the photobooth’, and the duty staff at LCCC commented, ‘If all proms and functions were like this it would be easy’. I was extremely proud as we finally said our goodbyes; the students have been an absolute pleasure to interact with for five years and they have developed into delightful young adults. The evening was fantastic; LCC was a great venue and the students had an excellent time boogying away until it finished - even Mr Armstrong and Miss Richards got in on the act with a "Dirty Dancing" lift to match the film. With no hint of bias, it was one of the best proms I've been to since being a teacher. Well done on a fantastic five years Year 11 and I hope you go on to have success on whatever path you choose.”
Thank you to Mr Tomlinson and Mrs Thomson for their efforts with this year group and to all the staff who came along on the night to make it a wonderful evening of celebration.
So, it’s been a fabulous summer term, with a number of events that will live long in the memory. All we have to do now is hold our breath and keep everything crossed for a repeat of last year’s fantastic examination results – our young people and their teachers certainly deserve it.
My Senior Leadership colleagues (including two new members) and I met for a 5 hour planning and review session yesterday and it got me very excited about the prospects for future success based on the very firm foundations we have built over time. You, the parents, form a very solid part of those foundations, so I would take this opportunity to thank you once again for your invaluable support and input. I have 18 days in the States to look forward to over the summer but am relishing the opportunity to continue Wellington’s ‘evolution’ come September.
A quick plug; Gripadventure, one of our partners, will be on Navigation Road Park running 'Project 79' a Thursday night youth engagement evening every Thursday night 7pm till 9pm for the next 8 months funded by Trafford and Gripadventure. I hope many of our students will engage in this community project and show what great citizens they are.
Also, the week beginning the 24th August for five days Gripadventure are running full days Adventure camp for 7-14 year olds based at Navigation Road Rec. Why not give it a go?
Anyway, I will check out for the last time this year and wish you all a safe, relaxing and happy summer holiday.
See you in September
S P Beeley
Welcome to Wellington School
Thank you for taking the time to view our website. I would like to begin by saying what an absolute honour it is to be the Headteacher of such an outstanding school. I relish the challenge of maintaining the exceptional standards established over many years and, indeed, moving Wellington forward in the future.
Wellington School is an 11 – 18 Academy with Humanities Specialism. Our motto is ‘Excellence in Everything’ and that is our aim in everything we do. To achieve this, high standards are expected of all our students and staff. All of our work is anchored in the values of mutual respect, responsibility, discipline, care for the individual and high achievement.
We are proud of our school and the achievements of our students, and our success is reflected in our popularity. High levels of student attendance and above average academic achievement – compared to schools both locally and nationally – are a clear sign of the value students and parents place on the experience of being part of Wellington School community.
We hope you enjoy our website and find it both informative and useful.
Stuart Beeley, Headteacher